Going Back To A Movie Theater During A Pandemic (My Experience)


I recently visited a movie theater so that I could see The New Mutants. In this article I detail my experience of going to a movie theater the COVID pandemic.

amc theater during pandemic experience

I have been waiting for The New Mutants for years, so when it was finally released in theaters, I knew I had to find a way to go. It just so happened that I was going to be on vacation in Florida visiting Walt Disney World opening weekend. At the time of writing this, theaters are still not open in New York, but I knew they would be at Disney Springs. 

the new mutants

My family decided to brave it all, and head to AMC Disney Springs to see The New Mutants. Yes, that includes my 7 and 9 year old daughters (who actually loved the movie). Did we feel safe? What precautions were taken? I am going to break it all down for you here.

amc theater during pandemic experience

Concessions Are Different

One of the major differences we noticed is how different concessions were. The candy is out in front of the registers and available to take yourself. I am sure this is to avoid an employee picking it up and handing it to you. The popcorn is out as well, and if you want butter, they give it to you in a separate container, to put on yourself. Employees are not allowed to pump butter on your popcorn for you right now.

amc theater during pandemic experience

There are also no refills available for popcorn, or drinks. When ordering your drink you got to a table that is set up in front of the Coca-Cola Freestyle drink machine. An employee will get your drink for you. 

amc theater during pandemic experience

Of course there are markings on the ground indicating where to stand. This is to ensure social distancing. However, when we were there, no one else was in the concession line. And honestly, there were only a handful of other parties seeing the movie we were.

Masks On At All Times 

While at the AMC Disney Springs, masks must be worn at all times, unless actively eating or drinking. This means while at your seat you need to be wearing one. Since it is so dark in the theater, and we were busy watching a movie, I don’t know if all parties obeyed these rules.

amc theater during pandemic experience

Reserved & Blocked Off Seating

When purchasing our tickets, we had to select our seats ahead of time. As we selected them, the ones around us became marked as unavailable. The system blocks off two seats on either end, and every seat behind you and in front of you — essentially creating a rectangle of empty seats around yours.

This is to ensure social distancing. In my experience, there was no one around us at all. The closest group was 4 rows in front of us, so it was not an issue. I can imagine that this safety precaution will be more important as more movies come out to theaters, and more people take the risk to go.

amc theater during pandemic experience

So Did I Feel Safe?

So did we feel safe going back to a movie theater during a pandemic? Absolutely. There were not many people in the building, we had minimal person to person contact, and we had the BEST time watching a film on the big screen again.

If you are wondering if you should go, you really need to weigh the options for yourself and your family. But I must say, we enjoyed ourselves. When theaters open back up here in New York, we will be first in line!

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